A Plague of Mold
Lay up not for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin; and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
Therefore take no thought saying, What shall we eat? or , What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.
Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. [Matthew 6:19-34]
In the last month, we’ve had an outbreak of mold in our apartment. In all the closets, behind the furniture, anywhere there wasn’t enough air circulation, this grey-green fuzzy mold is growing. Including under the children’s beds. We had to completely empty out their room and wash all their toys, clothes, furniture, walls, carpet….
I keep telling myself, “God did not send us a plague of mold just to tell me that we have too many possessions.” For one thing I really don’t believe God works that way. But the fact is, I already knew that. I know that I hoard too much stuff. I have not lived up to the Light that has been given me. I have heard the word of God and not obeyed.
I have placed my trust in strong walls and tight windows and yet mold and rust have come to corrupt our possessions from the inside.
I have cared too much for things that might be useful someday, instead of trusting that what I need tomorrow will come tomorrow.
Yet even mold is not enough to make me do what know I ought to do. I still have to ask God to help me, for strength and patience and to overcome the ickiness and anxiety of it all. I don’t feel so much like the stupid carpenter who built his house on the beach. I’m more like the ones who had eyes but would not see, who had ears but would not hear. What I need is to be more like the man who said, “Lord, I believe! Help thou my unbelief.” And then, I need to act, to follow God’s commandments.
It’s not that I believe that if I pray correctly or hard enough, that God will take the mold away. Have you heard the old saying, “Trust in God but tie up your camels”? Well, at our house this week, it’s “trust in God and buy a dehumidifier.” But neither is that enough to do what really needs to be done.
I think the real problem, for me personally, and our whole community, is not an excess of people saying, “Lord, Lord” to make themselves look good but not meaning it. It’s a lack of willingness to admit we need help; to say “God, I can’t do this by myself.” “Lord, help me.”
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.”
And if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get rid of what you need to.
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